City pupils join Archbishop in online Assembly

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, will deliver the first assembly at the newly-launched Oak National Academy.

And joining him – at least online – will be pupils from Sneinton Church of England Primary School.

They have filmed an introduction on the theme of hope which will be used at the start of the Assembly.

The Archbishop’s address will be streamed through TES from 10am on Thursday 30 April. It will then remain available on the Oak National Academy website.

Oak National Academy opened its doors on Monday 20th April. The online classroom provides a sequenced plan of video lessons and curricular resources for teachers, as well as parents and their children.

A direct response to the coronavirus situation, Oak offers over 180 lessons a week. It has the support of various education organisations including the Sutton Trust, Teach First, the Teaching Schools Council and the Confederation of School Trusts, and is backed by the Department for Education.

Watch the Assembly here

In addition to the assemblies, the Church of England is also partnering with Oak National Academy to provide separate weekly collective worship sessions led by schools, which will be accessible to those of all faiths and none. This will be part of the Church of England’s forthcoming #FaithAtHome programme.

Thursday’s event is expected to be the biggest school assembly ever held in the UK. In his pre-recorded address, the Archbishop will say: “I suspect this year 2020 will stick in the mind for many reasons and there are lots of things that you will be going through. What do we do with that? For Christians, it’s all summed up in a word ‘hope’… hope means the certain expectation of something you don’t have yet but you will have in the future because it’s been promised by God.

“Hope is hope of Life, hope of purpose, hope of peace, hope of justice, equality and a good future.”

The Archbishop also draws on the words of Nelson Mandela, as well as his own experience of a visit to Sudan where he met and prayed with a young Christian refugee.